Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Golf Etiquette

Agreeable companionship on the links is one of the great attractions of golf, indeed a famous golfer has said that companionship is the chief joy of this game. 

Golf and How to Play

Every golfer should learn the printed rules of golf etiquette by heart. They should be his spiritual leading and no golfer should step to a tee without knowing these rules of conduct. Golf etiquette aims to regulate one's conduct toward one's fellow players and a knowledge of it will help us to see ourselves as other golfers see us. 

Agreeable companionship on the links is one of the great attractions of golf, indeed a famous golfer has said that companionship is the chief joy of this game. Look around you at any club and you will see that the man who frequently disregards the etiquette of the game has few invitations to play with the more desirable players, for there is no surer way to lose popularity than selfish violation of the rights of others. Try not to earn this sort of unpopularity. 

Talking and moving when a player is about to drive is a serious offense and so is standing within a player's line of vision. Keep a good distance away. Replacing divots is a rule to be faithfully lived up to. 

When several matches are on the fairway, singles, foursomes, etc., the player farthest away (technically designated "away") invariably plays first. The single match has the right of way, but if a single is not going any faster than a foursome, it should not in courtesy ask to go through. Golf etiquette is a series of rules plus common sense. I think a player should always help look for a ball. 

I think it should be assumed that the least that can be asked of anyone is that he follow the written rules, but there are many unwritten rules, the observance of which classes a man as an honest sportsman and a gentleman. 

Watch yourself for annoying mannerisms. I remember I once took a great dislike to a golfer who had a bad habit of coming over to his opponent's ball and thus making his presence unpleasantly “felt.” Don't practice putts when those behind are waiting to play up. A man should not take too many practice swings for the benefit of his own game and at the expense of his partner's patience. The proper spirit of golf shows itself in a scrupulous regard for every right of your opponent. 

There is such a thing, too, as insisting too much upon one’s own rights. Although golf is not golf, if not played according to the rules, the average player should avoid the manners of a school master on the links. Rules should be enforced by officials. In all the years I have been playing golf, I have never called a hole, or stroke on anyone through a technicality. I have no desire to win except by actual strokes. 

As a consequence I have lost many important matches, but I feel that I have gained much of more importance. To my way of thinking, it is better to give your opponent a little more than he has a right to ask. Summed up, golf etiquette is regard for the other fellow. It means avoiding offense, being not unduly depressed over ill fortune, or puffed up over good. “And if you fall, or if you rise. Be each, pray God, a gentleman.” —Sacramento Union, 1919

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J Graber, is the Site Moderator and Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia

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